Athletes can experience many types of injuries to their feet and ankles. Ankle sprains are very common and can be prevented with proper footwear and the use of a brace or wrap, especially if the ankle has been injured in the past. Plantar fasciitis is also common for athletes who are constantly running or jumping. Plantar fasciitis affects the long, thick connective tissue that runs from the heel to the toes and supports the arch of the foot. When this fascia becomes inflamed, it can be extremely painful. Other injuries include ingrown toenails, hammertoes, and Achilles tendonitis.
A proper fitting shoe will prevent the foot from sliding and it will also eliminate any unnecessary pressure that could prevent the foot from functioning naturally. With the right shoe, an athlete can excel at their chosen sport because their feet and ankles have the support they need to move and function freely. The right shoe will allow for proper movement and give the foot the space it needs to move, shift, and grip, without sliding or slipping. Athletic shoes often have soles that are designed for certain types of play. This also plays a role in keeping an athlete healthy because it allows them to perform the movements needed to excel at their individual sport.
The first step in protecting the feet and ankles is to have the right type and size of footwear. Each sport has footwear that is specifically designed to help protect the athlete from injury. Shoes that fit properly offer support and help to stabilize the foot during various types of activity. Individuals who have experienced injuries in the past may benefit from an orthotic or brace that will support the ankle or the arch of the foot and protect it from further damage. It is extremely important to maintain a constant level of physical fitness. Exercising the feet, ankles, and legs will help to protect the entire area from various injuries that can occur when participating in any strenuous activity.